1. POPULIST SPEECH

    Obama Condemns Income Inequality

    US President Barack Obama pauses as he speaks on the economy and an extension of the payroll tax cut at Osawatomie High School December 6, 2011 in Osawatomie, Kansas. AFP PHOTO/Mandel NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

    Mandel Ngan / AFP / Getty Images

    President Obama channeled some 99 percent populism in a big speech on economic inequality, saying that it is at the worst level since the Great Depression and that it’s a “make or break moment for the middle class." The speech, which used the "moralistic" language of the Occupy protests, was held on the GOP's turf, in Kansas. Invoking Theodore Roosevelt, Obama said that a free market is not “a free license to take whatever you want from whoever you can.” Switching to campaign mode, he contrasted his stance with the Republicans, whom he compared to the Gilded Age elites that opposed Roosevelt and “thought massive inequality and exploitation was just the price of progress.” Obama also threatened to veto any attempt by congressional Republicans to weaken the new consumer-protection panel.

    Read it at Talking Points Memo